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Setting Sail With Klay Thompson

The future Hall of Famer reflects with Boardroom about bouncing back from a career-changing injury, his growing status as a boating enthusiast, and winning a fourth NBA title.

The road back for Klay Thompson was unimaginably daunting and arduous.

One of the greatest shooters to ever play basketball, Thompson made five All-Star games and won three NBA titles with the Golden State Warriors before tearing his ACL in a 2019 Finals defeat to the Toronto Raptors. While he was rehabbing that injury, which cost him the entire 2019-2020 campaign, he tore his Achilles, causing him to miss another season-plus.

Klay returned to NBA action on Jan. 9, 2022 after not playing in a game for 941 days. Miraculously enough, the sharpshooter managed to average more than 20 points per game during the regular season the rest of the way, ultimately helping guide the Warriors to another championship.

Now, it’s time to run it back.

Back in July, the 32-year-old shooting guard was in a celebratory mood at the ESPY Awards in Los Angeles, where his teammate and co-star Stephen Curry hosted the proceedings. Sporting a double-breasted gray and black Dolce & Gabbana tux with a black bowtie, Thompson was both celebratory and reflective in a red carpet interview with Boardroom.

With the Warriors getting their rings on Tuesday before hosting LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers to open the 2022-23 season, we thought it would be a proper time to share our Klay Q&A, which has been edited for length and clarity.

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SHLOMO SPRUNG: First of all, congratulations on all your success. When you’ve experienced difficult moments along the way, what have you done to help yourself get through them?

KLAY THOMPSON: That’s a great question. Tony Robbins helped me a lot. I just did a session with him — a personal one-on-one session with him — twice and he gave me some good advice on how to motivate myself when you’re going through those tough days in rehab. And on top of that, I would say my family and just life on the ocean. I’m very blessed to live by the water. I’ve spent a lot of days out there, and I’m telling myself how lucky I am to do that.

SS: What’s been your favorite boating adventure?

KT: Probably my overnight trips to Catalina. It’s so fun to go out there and anchor up and fish and eat what you catch. Or just a day trip. Those days give me life.

SS: Who’s your favorite athlete to watch in a different sport?

KT: That’s a great question. Probably Lamar Jackson.

SS: What’s the best investment you’ve made in the last year?

KT: Buying a Boston Whaler.

SS: When you won your fourth NBA title in June, what was swimming through your mind?

KT: All the days it took to get to that point and how I thought it was possible, but the fact that it was happening in real time was just insane. I wish I could go back and enjoy it, man. Those moments go by so fast. It’s crazy. [The ESPYs] feel like the final cap-off event to the championship season.

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